Get en­gaged with Steve the Sci­ence Guy

Toronto Star - - LIFE - Tick­ets for“EX­PLOD­ING SODA AND FLY­ING POTA­TOES: An Evening of Sci­ence with Steve Sp an­gler” are avail­able on­line atTHEMUSEUM.ca.

QUAN­TUM: The Ex­hi­bi­tion isn’t just an ex­hi­bi­tion: Ad­di­tional pro­gram­ming, such as The Quan­tum Di­a­logues, will serve to in­spire and en­lighten.

“Sci­ence has al­ways been fun for kids — if it wasn’t fun for kids it’s be­cause an adult messed it up,” said Emmy award-win­ning TV per­son­al­ity Steve Span­gler, also known as the ‘Sci­ence Guy’ from the Ellen Show.

Span­gler will join THEMUSEUM for a spe­cial pre­sen­ta­tion en­ti­tled, “EX­PLOD­ING SODA AND FLY­ING POTA­TOES: An Evening of Sci­ence with Steve Span­gler” on Novem­ber 30.

And he’s chang­ing the di­a­logue to make sci­ence fun for par­ents and ed­u­ca­tors, too. Like any Span­gler pre­sen­ta­tion, he’ll of­fer up hands-on demos, a bit of hu­mour and a cou­ple of ‘ooh and ahh’ mo­ments — for kids and adults alike.

“These are the in­flu­encers that have a far greater reach with our chil­dren to­day,” he said. “The teacher is the cat­a­lyst but the par­ent is able to con­tinue this con­ver­sa­tion and nur­ture this and water this and watch it grow.”

While Span­gler isn’t a quan­tum physi­cist, he’s a sci­ence cheer­leader who’s known for his fun, ac­ces­si­ble ap­proach to sci­ence. He started his ca­reer as a teacher, and re­mem­bers a class where he taught sci­en­tific prin­ci­ples by blow­ing up pumpkins and cre­at­ing bub­bling con­coc­tions for Hal­loween. A par­ent came to him the next day and said: “You have my daugh­ter’s un­di­vided at­ten­tion. Now do some­thing with it.”

That mes­sage has stayed with him. “We work so hard with ex­hibits like this — now there has to be a call of ac­tion,” said Span­gler. “We have to do that in ed­u­ca­tion and make sure there are ad­di­tional re­sources.” The goal of QUAN­TUM: The Ex­hi­bi­tion is to make quan­tum sci­ence ac­ces­si­ble to peo­ple of all ages, to start a di­a­logue and to in­spire a new way of think­ing.

“This ex­hibit will al­low peo­ple to walk away with a ba­sic un­der­stand­ing about what is meant by quan­tum physics,” he said. “The en­gage­ment they have on the mu­seum floor will build con­nec­tions in mind and they in turn can share that ex­pe­ri­ence with some­one else.”

Of course, it doesn’t mean ev­ery per­son who vis­its the ex­hibit will be­come a quan­tum physi­cist. “You don’t have to be a physi­cist or sci­en­tist to ap­pre­ci­ate it,” said Span­gler. “But when an ex­hibit can cause you to think dif­fer­ently, to dis­ori­ent you a lit­tle bit, you don’t re­al­ize it but you’re al­ready en­gaged.”

STEVE SPAN­GLER

Steve Span­gler, a.k.a. Steve the Sci­ence Guy, in ac­tion.

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